UFH scoops 8 awards at 2023 MACE Excellence Awards

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The University of Fort Hare retained its position as the Eastern Cape’s top performing institution in marketing and communication after winning the highest number of MACE excellence awards in the province for a second year in a row. MACE (Marketing Advancement Communication in Education), the association body for marketing and communication practitioners in the Higher Education sector, hosted the annual awards ceremony last night in Greenpoint, Cape Town.

Fort Hare stepped away with eight (8) awards in total.  The University received seven (7) awards for student recruitment, multi-day events and functions, stakeholder relations, and publication design, but was also the recipient of the MACE Research Award. This award was conferred after the institution received the highest score for effective measurement and evaluation from all 153 winning entries submitted by 17 South African universities for UFH stakeholder relation campaigns.


The University won awards for:

1. Wamkelekile Fresher – the 2023 bold and spirited first-year orientation programme (Student Affairs)

2. The development of a special publication to assist first-time entering students cope with the fears and anxieties encountered when transitioning from high school to varsity life (Student Affairs / Student Counselling Unit);

3. The 2022 UFH Staff Indaba and Appreciation Event (Office of the Vice-Chancellor);

4. The undergraduate student recruitment campaign for the academic year 2023 (undertaken on behalf of the University’s six faculties and the Office of the Registrar);

5. An institutional stakeholder engagement programme ideated by Institutional Advancement for local government that involved pro bono skills training to empower PR and Ward Councilors in the Raymond Mhlaba Municipality (Office of the Vice-Chancellor and Fort Hare Solutions).

“We are grateful and humbled for the recognition. We extend our congratulations to all other winning institutions,” said JP Roodt, UFH Director of Marketing and Communications.

 “The awards are important for us to benchmark our growth, development and contribution to the University’s renewal programme but also to measure and evaluate the value creation by the institution for constituents in its stakeholder universe,” he said.

Case study entries evaluated by MACE in various categories need to demonstrate excellence and rigid academic standards in planning, delivery, measurement and evaluation.  Entries are evaluated by seasoned professionals in higher education, government and the private sector’s marketing and communication sectors, and submissions are also moderated. 

In September this year, the University of Fort Hare was named one of the coolest university brands in South Africa by the Sunday Times GenNext survey that unveiled the most admired South African brands across 70 categories, including institutions of higher learning last week.

The University of Fort Hare was the only Eastern Cape university that appeared on the list.

Institutions of higher learning in the brand survey that the University of Fort Hare surpassed in ranking position included UNISA, Northwest University, and Sol Plaatje University. The overall top five coolest brands were (1) Univen, (2) Yale University, (3) Stanford University, (4) Oxford, and (5) and the University of Fort Hare.


Researchers conducted visits to 98 schools to survey tweens (8 – 12 years) and teens (13 – 18 years), and other engagements took place to survey young professionals (25 – 30 years). The Northern Cape was excluded from visits due to sparse distribution of schools. With 5 900 young people being surveyed, the Sunday Times GenNext survey had a statistically representative sample of South African youth.  The survey was audited by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC).